Once a River...
Once a river flowed through a wooded valley and carried fresh water to the bay. It ran clean and clear, filled with life. Settlers moved into the area and the river was given a name, Jones Falls. Over time the human population surrounding the stream grew by many fold and threatened the health of J.F. and its tributaries. Neighborhoods increased resulting in floods and accumulating sewage. Jones Falls, no longer the pristine waterway it once was, became a "problem."
Leaders of the City treasured the river valley as a transportation corridor. As sewage systems aged they could no longer accommodate the volume of human waste, and overflow dumped raw sewage into an already polluted waterway. Jones Falls was channeled to minimize flood damage. It was covered by an elevated highway. Finally suffering the ultimate indignity, it was buried. At North Avenue, in downtown Baltimore, Jones Falls enters three large culverts, only emerging again as it nears the Harbor.
I live in the City nears Jones Falls and began photographing the stream as I traveled along its course. I found moments of natural beauty where deer and fox can be seen using trails at the water's edge. Many times I watched kingfishers dip into the water in search of a meal. I once encountered a young man who said he often leaves work at noon just to sit near the water and enjoy his lunch. In spite of all that has taken place, the beauty and worth of this natural waterway still lives.